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Glock 49 – the newest Glock Perfection

Glock 49 – the newest Glock Perfection

Posted by Monte Long on Mar 28th 2024

Plastic fantastic. Tactical Tupperware. Glock “Perfection” - virtually everyone alive is familiar with the name, thanks to Glock’s overwhelming dominance of the law enforcement and concealed carry markets and their widespread use in the entertainment industry. Everyone from your neighborhood police officer to your favorite action hero has been seen using a Glock of some sort – and with guns ranging from the behemoth 6” barreled model 40 down to the diminutive G42, there’s a model to fit virtually any need and most desires.

In the handgun shooting and self-defense realms, Glock is currently the top dog, and for good reason. Glock pistols have a well-earned and well-established reputation for reliability, durability, accuracy, and affordability. They’ve been used in the mean streets of New York to battlefields in the Middle East, and everywhere in between. Glock, both the handguns and the company, have proven that they’ve got what it takes to go the distance.

Glock (the company) is also really good at making folks scratch their head and go “Huh?” when new models come out. Their numbering system tends to drive many people new to the shooting sports a bit nuts. You want a .45 ACP? You need a model 21, 30, 36 or 41 – but not the 45 which is chambered in 9MM. You want a .40 S&W? You’re going to need a model 22, 23, 24, 27, or 35 – but not the model 40 because it’s a 10MM. The weirdness is because the model numbers are sequential based on when the design was started.

They also make some…odd decisions on models. The Glock 45 is a great example. When it was released in 2018, a lot of people scratched their heads. The G45 uses a Glock 19 (compact model) slide and a receiver designed to take the full-sized 17 round magazine. A lot of people wondered what Glock was doing. It wasn’t ideal for concealed carry – the grip is a full-sized grip, and that’s the hard part to hide. The reality is that the 45 was built for law enforcement use – the shorter slide and barrel and correspondingly shorter holster make it a bit more comfortable to wear the gun while driving a black and white.

What many people said they wanted was a “19L” – a handgun with a Glock 19 length grip to make it easier to conceal, but the barrel length and sight radius of a 17. The longer barrel should provide some extra velocity and the longer sight radius should make it easier to shoot good groups. For years, people asked for it. And, until recently, those requests were unfulfilled.

Glock 49 vs Glock 17 vs Glock 19

G49 Overview

In November of 2023, Glock announced a Talo exclusive model – the Glock 49. Talo and their distribution network convinced Glock to take the slide from the Glock 47 and mate it to the receiver of a Glock 19 and voila! You have the Glock model 49. At XS, we’re gun guys and gals that like to keep up with the newest cool guns that come out, so we ordered one shortly after they were released.

The new G49 is a Gen5 model, which gives users an ambidextrous slide stop, no finger grooves and a reversible magazine catch. It also has the improved internals that give the Gen5 family the best out of the box trigger that Glock has ever had to offer. It has the 4.49” barrel and 6.5” slide that you find on the G17. The overall height of 5.4” and 15 round magazine capacity are duplicates of the compact G19. Being a hybrid, the weight is in between the two – my scale says 1.38 pounds for the 49, which is closer to the 1.4 pound G17 than the 1.3 pound G19.

The trigger breaks at around 5 ¼ pounds. There’s a little bit of “grit” in the trigger, but it’s manageable. The trigger in my Gen5 Glock 19 is lighter at a consistent 4 lbs., 15.5 oz, and is definitely smoother. It’s worth mentioning that my G19 has about 15,000 rounds through it, and at least that many dry fire reps. The live fire and dry fire help the trigger bar, connector, firing pin and safety wear into one another which improves the way the trigger feels. The slightly lighter overall pull weight is a combination of the parts being worn in and a firing pin spring that’s showing some use - it’s probably time to replace it to ensure reliability.

Glock 49 at the range

Outside of the technical info that anyone can find on Glock’s website, what do I think? Well, the only way to come up with a good answer is to actually carry and shoot the gun. One of the perks of the job is being able to check out a gun and take it to the range for testing purposes. So, in December, I pulled the G49 out of the safe several times for range trips. While at the range, I carried the Glock 49, both concealed and open. I used it to practice and for demos while teaching.

The 49 shot well. Accuracy was on par with both my Glock 47 and Gen5 19. Demos for students went well (including a couple of 75 yard, strong-hand only shots on B/C silhouette while demoing distance shooting), and the 49 performed perfectly with both Speer Lawman 124 grain TMJ and Speer Gold Dot 124 grain +P ammunition.

Carrying concealed inside the waistband, either in appendix or behind the hip, wasn’t any different than carrying the G19 concealed. While the 49 does have an extra ½ of barrel over the 19, carrying concealed in an outside the waistband holster wasn’t really any different between the two models.

Drill wise, I shot a modified Vickers test (I started concealed in a JM Custom Kydex Wing Claw 2.0 appendix holster rather than ready) a few times, all from concealment. The same holster was used for comparing both guns. Hit factor is simply points divided by time – it’s just another way of looking at the results to analyze performance. Here are averages for both my G19 and the G49 (Naturally I used Glock night sights; DXT2O=DXT2 Big Dot Orange front; DXT2Y=DXT2 Big Dot Yellow front):

Vickers Test
Gun Holster Sights Time Points Hit Factor
Glock 19 JMCK DXT2O 7.91 94.8 11.98482933
Glock 49 JMCK DXT2Y 9.21 98 10.64060803

vickers test with Glock 49

Those are averages of several runs from both guns. I’ve obviously had the G19 quite a bit longer and have worked at pushing speed with it quite a bit more (the average was 20 runs over the last three years). With the G49, I’ve only shot 6 runs on the Test, and was focusing on accuracy more so than speed.

I also shot Pat McNamara’s 500-point Aggregate with both the 19 and the 49. All runs were shot from the same holster, though on different days, and different guns were shot first on different days so that I had performance while cold and warmed up with both pistols. Here’s how that looked:

500 Point Aggregate
Gun Sights Holster Freestyle 20 yards SHO 15 Yards WHO 15 Yards Timed 10 yards Rapid 7 Yards Totals
G49 DXT2O JMCK 99 89 83 98 100 469
G19 DXT2Y JMCK 99 95 93 96 95 478

I suffered a bit on the strong hand only and weak hand only portions of the drill with the 49. That’s straight operator error that’s slightly exacerbated by the grit in the trigger (that’s what I’m telling myself, anyway).

While the scores show better performance with the 19, I have no doubt with a little effort I could meet or beat that performance. I’ve had my Gen5 19 since they were released, so I’ve got LOTS of data on performance with the 19. I had six or seven sessions with the G49, so any bad runs (and there were one or two) have a much bigger effect on the average scores.

Thoughts on the Glock 49

I was hanging around the armory at one of the local police departments talking with the instructor cadre a few weeks ago. They were in the middle of a round of annual qualifications, so the range was hopping and lots of officers were in and out to shoot through the qual course. A young officer, just out of his time riding with an FTO, was hanging around and asking questions about a variety of handgun models, and, if you were to be limited to a single handgun, what would you pick?

The unanimous decision from those in attendance, including myself, was Glock 19. While it’s not the best choice for any given role, it’s a darn good choice for any role that you might want it for. Concealed carry? Yep – the 19 is easy to carry and conceal and packs a decent amount of ammo. Duty use? Again, the 19 is a great option – its compact size makes it easy to carry on a duty belt, but it’s still big enough to fight with, and the 15 round capacity is on par with most steel or aluminum framed duty guns and, as a bonus, the 19 will work flawlessly with Glock 17 magazines. Competition use? Sure. Again, while it’s a compact pistol, it’s still big enough to use well.

All that was before I spent some time with the Glock 49. If I was asked that same question now, I would have to go with the new G49. From the carry perspective, it’s still quite easy to carry concealed – heck, I use a Glock 17 AIWB holster to carry the 19 I’ve got. For a duty gun, it will carry more like a Glock 17 thanks to the barrel length. As a game gun, with a bit of shooting, it should outperform the G19 thanks to the increased sight radius. For IDPA, where you’re limited to 10 rounds, or USPSA/IPSC Production division’s 15 round magazine limit, you’re not going to suffer as the flush-fit mags hold 15 and can be down-loaded to 10. For those of us that shoot 3-gun, you can use G17 mags with extensions with no problem.

Not only that, but holsters and accessories are inexpensive and easy to find. The Glock 49 will use the same holster as a Glock 17 or a Glock 47. Shooters can use Glock 19 or Glock 17 mags with no issue. The magazine catch, the slide stop, and the trigger are all interchangeable with anything that works on a Gen5 Glock 17. As for sights, anything that works for a Glock 17 or Glock 19, like our R3D 2.0 family or our DXT2 family, will work like a champ! XS offers a variety of Glock sights to meet your needs and preference.